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Color You Moody

Updated on September 15, 2015

Colors, Moods and Health

Colorful History

Throughout history, colors have signified loss, triumph, royalty and servitude. The colors purple and crimson have always denoted royalty. Only royals could afford the costly purple and red dyes. Thus, the color purple came to indicate royal pompousness.

Loyal subjects chose grey, black or brown since the dyes for these were in abundance. Gray and black are not really considered colors; although, they are capable of creating moods.

Did you ever wonder what the real effects of colors are on humans? Or, how colors affect emotions, moods and health? The psychology of using color to affect the human psyche has been used for centuries. Here, we will explore the psychological effects of color on individuals.

The Secret Colors Used in the Dining Industry

The next time you visit a fast food restaurant, notice the most prevalent colors. They are usually bright yellow or orange. In formal, upscale restaurants, the prevalent colors might be mauve, rose or French blue. Fast food restaurants want to encourage diners not to languish for long over their meals. This is why they choose bright yellow or orange as a color scheme. The cost of fast food is far less expensive than a four star formal restaurant. So, fast food restaurant owners deliver food orders quickly and want customers to leave just as quickly to furnish a new supply of customers.

In four star restaurants, food is expensive. These restaurant owners choose subtle colors like mauve, rose or French blue. These colors encourage customers to remain in the restaurant longer and to spend more on their dining experience.

Hospitals and medical offices also rely on color as a psychological means of soothing patients' nerves before medical services or care is administered. The colors most often seen in hospitals and medical offices are apple green. Psychologically, apple green has a certain vitality; yet, it is also soothing to the senses and frayed nerves.

In airports and the interiors of planes, you will most likely notice varying shades of blue. The color blue induces a sense of relaxation and serenity. It helps to calm nervous, high strung passengers. Color psychologists recommend the color blue for bedrooms to aid in sleep. Although, these color psychologists also recommend not using blue in bedrooms that face north, since certain shades of blue can have a chilling effect.

Note that blue is used to aid in plant growth. Blue lighting has a positive effect on plant growth; just as placing a blue cloth over some plants in a greenhouse seem to flourish.

Green is the color of productivity and hope. It's a youthful happy color that in former times symbolized prosperity. The hunter green color of a billiard table is comforting, calm and motionless, suggesting a certain air of contentment and rest.

Ruby red, the color of roses, wind and rhododendrons signifies passion and energy. Whereas, bright red often warns of danger. Red may also signify war, fire, heat and creative power of mankind.

One interesting science experiment used to prove the negativity of the color red was when a spider and a wasp, natural enemies, were placed together under a colorless glass dome. In this experiment, they will live in peace. Placed under a red dome and the two will immediately engage in a bitter fight to their deaths.

Scarlet, the color of ripe cherries denotes triumph. It was also the color used in old fashioned sealing waxes. Scarlet may also denote brilliance, sharpness and bitterness.

As previously mentioned, the bright orange color is assertive and aggressive, as well as positive. As symbol of the sun, it expresses warmth, fruitfulness and wealth.

The Color Yellow

There are several shades of yellow: Lemon, pale yellow and greenish yellow. Lemon yellow is the shade associated with the color of buttercups. It's luminous, active, naive and subtly egotistical. It may also be vivacious and when it's a reminder of childhood, it can also be disturbing.

Pale yellow has a frivolous psychological effect. It's the color egg yolks become after being beaten rapidly for five or more minutes. Greenish yellow portrays a sense of inconsistency, deceit and jealousy.

The New Testament apostle, Judas, the betrayer, was said to be clothed in greenish yellow garb. In France, the doors to the homes of traitors were daubed with greenish yellow paint.

More Interesting Facts About Color

There are a number of sayings humans use to describe their emotional states. These include:

"I'm in a blue, blue mood." "I'm in a blue funk."

"She's green with envy."

"His soul is black as night."

"He's yellow (meaning his a coward)"

"Her hair is fiery red."

"I'm in the pink," (good health).

"White as a ghost."

"In a brown study..."

"White hot with passion"

"Brown as a berry."

Each of these is descriptive uses of colors

The Effect of Colors We Wear

For sales people, it's important to be aware that the color of clothing can determine whether or not you can close a sale. Many sports fans hold the suspicion that the color of their favorite sports team's uniforms can make the difference in a win or a loss. It's also been interesting to note that gender is often displayed in blue for males and pink for females. Strawberry pink is most often the choice for little girls, while "baby" blue is chosen for little boys.

What About Rainbows?

Color plays a much greater part in human lives than most imagine, especially in health and disease. Sir Isaac Newton once sought an explanation for the phenomenon of rainbows. This British scientist of renown theorized that the sun's light was not homogenous but consisted of several kinds of light. This is known today as the phenomenon of dispersion."

Rainbows have been visible in the sky since the beginning of time. When the sun shines on raindrops, the sun's brilliance creates colorful prisms.

Color in Art

World famous artists have always relied on color to speak a language that communicates the significance of their paintings. Each artist created a signature style of art from the bright pastels of Monet to the wildly expressive colors used by Marc Chagall. Colors used by artists are symbolic of emotions and are specifically chosen to evoke emotions in art lovers. This is true of the paintings by American artist, Charles Russell, who chose bright oranges, reds and yellows to recreate the scenes of battles between the US Cavalry and Native American Indians in western scenes.

Study Color for Progressive, Advanced Thinking

The colors chosen for outside homes, offices, factories, hospitals and hotels can pay dividends not only in increased efficiency and health, but also in progressive, advanced thinking. Study colors carefully to set the right mood, evoke the most advantageous emotions and to create mental and physical balance that aids good health. In years past, it as believed that mood could be determined by wearing a ring with a semi precious stone or a stone that changed color with changes in moods.

The use of colorful stones played an important role in creating moods and a sense of mental balance. For example, the brilliant lime green Peridot, in ancient times signified healing properties and power. Rubies represented passion, emotion and courage. The beautiful blue sapphire represented loyalty, trust, honesty and truth. Topaz has been considered by ancient Egyptians to have healing properties. Native Americans believe turquoise also has healing properties and endows the wearer with power and protection from evil. In China since 2950 BC, jade have been a bearer of protection from harm and an indication of prosperity and good luck.

Colors are all around us. Take note of how colors affect you and which colors seem to affect you most. There's an old French legend about a pretender to the French thrown. He had the future French king thrown into a tower room that was painted purple, believing the color purple could drive the future king mad. This is a wonderful example of the beliefs in the power of colors.

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    • Ewent profile image
      Author

      Eleanore Ferranti Whitaker 23 months ago from Old Bridge, New Jersey

      Me too...After the color brown, green is my favorite.

    • David Trujillo profile image

      David Trujillo Uribe 23 months ago from Medellin, Colombia

      then I will be wearing more green!

    • Ewent profile image
      Author

      Eleanore Ferranti Whitaker 23 months ago from Old Bridge, New Jersey

      I covered green:

      "Green is the color of productivity and hope. It's a youthful happy color that in former times symbolized prosperity. The hunter green color of a billiard table is comforting, calm and motionless, suggesting a certain air of contentment and rest."

      "Hospitals and medical offices also rely on color as a psychological means of soothing patients' nerves before medical services or care is administered. The colors most often seen in hospitals and medical offices are apple green. Psychologically, apple green has a certain vitality; yet, it is also soothing to the senses and frayed nerves."

    • David Trujillo profile image

      David Trujillo Uribe 23 months ago from Medellin, Colombia

      How about Green?